Former Bukit Begunan lawmaker Donald Lawan passes on at 81 due to heart failure

Late Datuk Donald Lawan

KUCHING, June 11: Former Bukit Begunan assemblyman Donald Lawan has passed away at 6.38pm today at the age of 81 at Borneo Medical Centre.

His son, Datuk Snowdan Lawan, who is Balai Ringin assemblyman told DayakDaily that his father’s passing was due to heart failure.

Donald, who was a successful Dayak businessman, was a political secretary to the Chief Minister before becoming Bukit Begunan assemblyman.


“He (Donald) was a pillar of strength for me in politics, like the late Tan Sri James Masing. Now that he is gone, I feel a great loss,” said Snowdan who is also Deputy Minister of Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts.

Donald was first elected as a lawmaker in the 1987 Sarawak Election when he stood for Sarawak National Party (SNAP) in Bukit Begunan to face Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) strongman Dato Sri Daniel Tajem.

Against all odds, hee was able to bring down Daniel with a slim majority of 59 votes and was thus dubbed the “Giant Killer”.

Four years in the 1991 Sarawak Election, the duo met again in Bukit Begunan, but for this round, Daniel managed to beat him with a majority of 534 votes.

Following that, Donald became actively involved in his business and may not have been officially active in politics but his political influence lingered. — DayakDaily